Great Family Fun This Weekend at the Ramona Airport Open House

If you are looking for a great family event for the weekend, how about something that has vintage aircraft, tricked-out trucks, firefighting air tankers, a rescue helicopter, and “Big Jimmy”? It’s all at the Ramona Airport Open House Saturday, Sept. 24 from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Big Jimmy is a 1939 GMC fire truck, originally built for the La Mesa Fire Department and recently discovered in a Northern California vineyard being used as a water pump for grapes. It’s been fully restored and is now operated by Cal Fire.

Other tricked out trucks will include more than 30 customized new and vintage rigs including Peterbilts, Kenworths, Freightliners and others.

Aircraft on display will include WWII-vintage fighters, experimental planes, huge fire fighting air tankers, the Mercy Air helicopter, and Copter 10, the Sheriff’s fire attack and rescue helicopter.

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Visitors can take a look inside the Mercy Air helicopter and watch Copter 10 perform fire-fighting demonstrations as well as a simulated rescue.  Other classic fighters from WWII and the Korean War will conduct formation flying displays.

If you’ve never been inside an airport traffic control tower, this weekend is your chance. The airport open house will also feature tours of  the Classic Rotors Helicopter Museum, the U.S. Forest Service’s Helitac Base and the Cal Fire Air Attack Base. The airport’s flight schools and businesses will also be open during the event. The event is free, and so is a shuttle that will run from the main parking lot.

The free event kicks off with a pancake breakfast, and lunch will be a Mexican buffet – both available for a nominal charge.

There’s something for everyone at our open house,” said Bo Donovan, Airport Manager, “tours, a crafts fair, games for the children, and the big rig truck show. This is a great family event showcasing our airport and it’s free.”

Ramona Airport is located at 2926 Montecito Road in Ramona. It’s one of the County’s eight community airports, and serves as the joint firefighting air attack base of the U.S. Forest Service. Cal Fire and Cal Fire which started flying fire missions out of the airport in 1957, making it the state fire agency’s oldest air attack base.